(All Scripture is from the New King James Version unless otherwise indicated)
How are parents to raise up children to be dedicated Christians in such a crazy post-Christian world? This has caused concern for many moms and dads who are looking for answers concerning faith-based parenting. In the preceding Gem we listed several challenges faced by today’s Christian parents, so I won’t go over them again here.
I was made aware of 8 Promises of God About Your Children, from the Kenneth Copeland Ministries. Whatever you might think of this televangelist, I am thankful for the eight Scriptural promises that were highlighted – plus I will add one or two more! We already considered Jeremiah 31:16 and 17; now let’s move on.
Number 2: Isaiah 54:13 – “All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children.”
As with all these Biblical promises, there are two ways to approach them – the interpretation and the application:
- The interpretation applies to the Scriptural context of the promise
✡ What is the wider Scriptural context of this promise? ✡ What is the historical setting of the Scrip- ture? ✡ To whom was the Scripture directed? ✡ How would the recipients interpret what was written?
This promise was given in the wider context of the southern kingdom of Judah’s seventy-year Babylonian captivity.
- Isaiah chapter 48 gives a declaration of Judah’s chastening because of their turning away from the LORD God unto idols, and ignoring God’s warning to return unto Him. But the LORD will still be merciful to the Jews, and eventually deliver them from their captivity.
- Isaiah chapter 49 outlines the mission of the Deliverer, the Messiah! The Jewish captives will be returned to their Palestinian homeland, and eventurally be restored to true worship of God. The Messiah will not only be the restorer of Israel but “…a light to the Gentiles, that You should be My salvation to the ends of the earth.” (Isaiah 49:6).
- Isaiah chapter 50 highlights the Messiah’s obedience, even to terrible suffering.
- Isaiah chapter 51 through 52:12 delivers the Messiah’s encouragement to the captive Jews.
- Isaiah chapter 52:13 through 53 is an amazingly detailed prophesy of the Messiah’s suffering, death, and mission of the cross!
- Isaiah chapter 54 proceeds to the eventual blessings given to Israel because of the Messiah’s sacrifice!
Thus the Jews of Isaiah’s day would interpret Isaiah 54:13 as part of the blessings that the Messiah would bestow on a regathered Israel!
- Israel was regathered from the Babylonian captivity in a small part when Zerubbabel and then later Ezra led a total of about 54,000 people back to Jerusalem!
- But the main fulfillment of this Isaiah prophesy is for the future Millennial Kingdom when Christ will reign a thousand years (see Revelation 20:6), and “…all Israel will be saved…” (Romans 11:26).
Now let’s get to the application of this promise: “All your children shall be taught by the LORD….”
- What is too often being taught in America to our children today? Critical Race Theory, fluidity of gender, alternative sexual lifestyles, Socialism, sometimes other religions – but not Christianity!
- In a Christian family, education is to start in the home! And as it continues in school, the parents are to be watching and aware of what is being taught!
✞ But the most effective Teacher is emphasized in John 16:13 – “...He, the Spirit of truth...He will guide you into all truth....” The Holy Spirit is God, the third Person of the Trinity. ➔ We are told in I John 2:27, “...the anoint- ing [the Spirit] which you have received of Him abides in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you, but the same anointing teaches you of all things....” ➔ Isaiah 30:21 is a Scripture whose interpre- tation belongs to the Millennial Kingdom. But it can be applied to the Spirit’s lead- ing of a believer today: “Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it.’” ✞ But how does He teach us? He takes the Word of God, the Bible, and applies it to our individual lives! So this is where Colossians 3:16 comes in: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly....” ➔ The Word is what the Spirit uses to teach us! ➔ So how often are we to be teaching the Bi- ble to our children in our homes...? ✡ Deuteronomy 11:18 and 19, which instruction God gave to the Israelites just before they entered the Promised Land, gives us an idea of how we, as Christians, should educate our children: ...you shall lay up these words of Mine in your heart and in your soul, and bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall teach them to your children, speaking of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. In other words, if you are an ancient Israelite, you have to be teaching your children ONLY when you are in the house, or outside of it, ONLY when you lie down or when you get up! There is no other time you have to instruct your sons and daughters. But wait! What other time is there?
- The world will be infilling our children with ideas in opposition to God (see James 4:4; I John 2:15-17). We, as Christian parents have to counteract that! As it says in Ephesians 6:4, “…bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord.”
The second half of Isaiah 54:13 is, “…and great shall be the peace of your children.”
This second promise is only eighteen words long, but I will have to continue the study of the final nine words in the next Gem.